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How Coca-Cola in Ukraine is giving back this winter

Special bottles produced by Coca-Cola Ukraine with "for you" labels. (Coca-Cola Ukraine Press Service)
by Coca-Cola HBC January 26, 2024 1:24 PM 4 min read
This audio is created with AI assistance

The bright red label of a Coca-Cola bottle is instantly recognizable to countless people around the world, including Ukrainians.

In the dark days of winter, Coca-Cola is partnering with humanitarian organizations, such as the Ukrainian Red Cross and Caritas Ukraine, to give one million bottles with a special version of this label to those in Ukraine who are the most in need of something bright.

The Ukrainian plant of Coca-Cola is producing a batch of one million 1.5-liter Coca-Cola bottles with "for you" on the label. With these bottles, Coca-Cola aims to bring a little joy to people living in the most difficult circumstances, during the most challenging time of the year.

Some of these are being donated to the D.R.E.A.M. Charitable Foundation, which works together with the Scottish NGO Siobhan's Trust to provide meals to people living in areas closest to the front line.

Bottles will also be given to those facing bereavement, those living with disabilities, and those who have been forced to flee their homes across Ukraine, as well as communities living closest to the front line. The gift of a million bottles represents a gesture of support and solidarity with Ukrainians, Coca-Cola said.

It is not the first time Coca-Cola has partnered with humanitarian organizations to help Ukrainians in winter. In September and October 2023, the Coca-Cola Company joined forces with the Ukrainian Red Cross to fund 45 mobile boilers before the start of the cold winter months, helping communities where heating infrastructure has been destroyed or worn out.

A few boilers will also be given to communities where heat generation is operating normally, in order to provide a backup boiler in case of Russian strikes or emergency shutdowns and accidents.

At a cost of around $3.5 million, the boilers directly provide 50,000 Ukrainians with hot water and heating. Since some of the boilers are connected to the local heating network, not just homes will be heated, but also kindergartens, schools, administrative buildings, and medical facilities. Over 100,000 people will therefore benefit from the project.

Beyond humanitarian partnerships, Coca-Cola also supports Ukraine by contributing to the wartime economy through paying taxes into the state budget and ensuring its employees can keep doing their jobs. In 2023, the company paid Hr 1.7 billion (over $45 million) in taxes to the state budget.

On a local level, Coca-Cola kept its plant in Velyka Dymerka in Kyiv Oblast operating, despite damage as a result of Russia’s invasion, with all 1,500 employees keeping their jobs. Coca-Cola also plans to rebuild the destroyed kindergarten in the nearby village of Bohdanivka.

Since Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24, 2022, the Coca-Cola System, together with The Coca-Cola Foundation, has committed $35 million for charitable assistance to Ukraine.

As well as the cost of the 45 mobile boilers, this figure includes 70,000 food parcels with the most essential basic ingredients, 5,000 bedding sets with warm blankets, and more than 50 power generators for educational, medical, and humanitarian institutions.

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